rest in your God-breathed worth.
stop holding your breath, hiding your gifts,
ducking your head, dulling your roar, distracting your soul, stilling your hands, quieting your voice,
and satiating your hunger
with the lesser things of this world.
~sarah bessey, jesus feminist
it's very still at this time of morning... no sound, just the occasional hum and exhale of the radiators combatting the 10 degree air seeping in through invisible cracks. sometimes the old farmhouse walls creak and settle, the sounds of a house that has held fast over time- held careful watch over many families.
the moon is brightly reflecting off the ice-blanketed snow on the lawn. i can see to find my way across the house, turn on the coffee, round up some blankets.
might as well warm my hands on delicious caffeinated bliss- heavily doused with dark chocolate almond milk. it will taste like mud for the next two weeks, and i'm not going to sleep tonight.
getting ready for another day of chemo, another cycle of poisonous, life-saving infusions... it has the anticipation and fear of preparing for childbirth. packing a bag- the familiar and well-loved quilt, the light, refreshing snacks (frozen green grapes- do this for yourself), the distracting books and movies. we fill the waiting-days with washing sheets, stocking the pantry, planning the week to come so everything goes as smoothly as possible.
the simultaneous 'can i do this?' and 'i must to do this' are alike, minus the beautifully enlarged family at the end of the labor struggle. but maybe that, too? if i get to stay here- if all this poison and surgery prevails- isn't our family larger, too? so yes- i feel like i'm preparing for another day of labor: fighting to be in the room with my babies, to complete our family of four.
the cat is so happy that i'm up. a little confused as to why i'm not filling his food dish, but pleased to be snuggled under blankets with me well before sunrise. the dog is sleeping and i'm struggling with jealousy. i love to sleep, and i'm excellent at it when i'm not filled with steroids in preparation for tomorrow's drug-fest.
i've listened to and read your many prayers, my friends and family from around the world. you send healing, encouragement, grief, and love in your letters, gifts, and e-mails. i am filled by them. filled by Him through you. i've tried to explain this before, somewhat unsuccessfully, and i doubt my sleepless, anxious, steroid-addled brain will do better this morning, but my heart will give it a try:
i don't feel like i need to do something to enter into prayer in this season- no formal 'dear God, it's me- rachel,' no calling out for Him to come near, no A.C.T.S. (adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication for those not raised in evangelical-dom).
i'm just lightly, constantly present with God, able to speak to Him, able to hear Truth. it's not the same prayer as pre-September. it's not the same place i was when Matt had cancer. and while i'm certainly not the same me, God is unchanged- just showing me His closeness in a new and precious way.
i know that may not make sense. i know some would like to see me doing something more- coming for prayer and anointing? asking for spiritual guidance in some way? boldly proclaiming and claiming healing? i am deeply thankful (on a good day) for this desire- it means love to me and my family. but all this is happening inside me... your prayers surround me and cover me with blessing. decades of your mentoring wisdom come back to me- your words floating before me when i need them most. boldness. is there anything more bold than proclaiming to you that i am in the Lord's presence? my hands are shaking just knowing that Truth- even in my sick, broken body, i am with God. i don't know if i will be ultimately healed, though i ask for it. but i know that i am already Healed- He does this (did it- it has happened!) the moment we see our need and trust He alone can fill it.
this is the same as when matt was sick:
i find again that God is enough for my need.
4:23 a.m. oh coffee. i will miss you. see you in 10 days or so.